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The 2008 All-Armed Forces men’s and women’s softball tournaments at Naval Air Station Pensacola, Fla., ended the same way as in 2007, with Army’s men and Air Force’s women winning gold medals.

Each team went 7-2 in repeating their championships, with Korea-based women airmen and male solders making a big difference, coaches and captains of each team said.

"Korea’s women all around did great," Air Force coach Cheryl Trapnell said of Osan Air Base pitcher Laurie Doughty, selected to the All-Armed Forces team for the ninth time; outfielder Candace Dugo, picked for a fifth time; and catcher Lindsey Ciullo, selected for the first time.

Trapnell, 20 times All-Air Force, 14 times All-Armed Forces and nine times All-American as a shortstop, is now 2-for-2 as a coach. But the title didn’t come easy, evidenced by Air Force’s 10-9 victory over Army on Thursday, in which the airmen came from five runs down in the seventh.

"The women’s division was tight, as tight as I can remember," Trapnell said.

On the men’s side, 10-time All-Army infielder and team captain Elmer Mason batted a tournament-high .792 for the second straight year, and joined seven-time All-Army outfielder Andre Elder on the All-Armed Forces team out of Korea.

"It feels great again and just as sweet," Mason said. "The only thing harder than winning a gold medal is defending and retaining one. It is sweet to be part of a back-to-back and lead the 15 best from the Army."

What could be sweeter?

"Winning nationals," Elder said of the Amateur Softball Association national Class A championship next weekend in Oklahoma City.

Stripes in 7

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